German beer producers asked the government for financial assistance after being forced to throw away unsold beer, to cope with reduced demand due to coronavirus confinement, they reported on Monday.
German bars, hotels and restaurants have been closed since the establishment of the second confinement in November, after the first one imposed at the beginning of last year.
The companies called on the German government to be granted aid under national programmes aimed at facilitating the recovery of the industry following the impact of the coronavirus. Berlin has allocated financial aid to bars and pubs, but not to beer producers.
“Every week more breweries, brewer-owned bars and wholesalers face closures through no fault of their own and are at risk of bankruptcy,” says an open letter signed by some 300 brewers and published by brewers’ associations DBB and VPBD.
Some of the signatories are Carlsberg Deutschland, a unit of Danish brewer Carlsberg, Bitburger Braugruppe, Krombacher and Paulaner Brauerei.
“The confinement and subsequent collapse of the draft beer market meant that breweries lost much of their economic foundation overnight,” says the missive.
“Stocks worth many millions of euros have had to be disposed of because they have exceeded their expiry date.”
Sales of bottled beer in shops were not “by far enough” to compensate for lost sales in the hospitality sector and low exports, brewers said.